When the schools are closed and there’s snow on the ground, the first thing kids want to do is go outside and play. Whether it’s building a snowman or going sledding, playing in the snow can be a great time for all.
In the case of sledding, there are risks involved. Some states have even gone as far as to ban sledding in certain areas. While sledding bans have resulted in outrage from children and parents alike, with upwards of 20,000 kids under the age of 19 requiring treatment for sledding injuries every year, you can’t overlook the danger.
If you’re taking to the hills this year, follow these tips to keep your kids safe.
- Don’t just drop them off
If your kids are with their friends, it can be tempting to just drop them off to avoid standing in cold temperatures. In the case of an accident, it is imperative to have an adult there to assist.
- Make sure all sledders are wearing helmets
Sledding injuries often include skull fractures. Sleds can reach speeds of up to 25 miles per hour, making injuries even more severe in the case of a crash. Make sure everyone who is sledding wears a helmet, especially if they are under 10 years old.
- Make sure equipment is in good condition
Make sure all sleds are free from all sharp edges and cracks, and look for loose parts.
- Check the area
Before sledding, check the hill for bare spots, holes, rocks, fences, and trees. Never sled near a frozen over lake, stream, or pond.
- Dress appropriately
To prevent frostbite and other injuries, dress your child in heavy boots, a coat, and gloves and mittens.
- Never sled head first
Sledding head first can increase your child’s risk of head injury. Always sled sitting or laying on your back.
If you follow these steps this winter, you can decrease risk of sledding injuries. If you or your child has been injured in a sledding accident, a Long Island Personal Injury attorney from The Odierno Law Firm, P.C. can help.